How many Trees and Renewable Energy is needed to revive the Planet?

How many Trees and Renewable Energy is needed to revive the Planet?

Are we meant to leave Earth? Or to save it?

Global Warming and Greenhouse Effects are discussed regularly as the cause of climate change and the negative effects they have on human life are alarming. The causes of Earth’s greenhouse effect include water vapors, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and the chlorofluorocarbons. Out of all these, CO2 gets the maximum amount of credit.

According to NASA, it is minor but very important component of our atmosphere. It is released through natural processes like respiration and volcano eruption. Similarly, human activities like burning fossil fuels and deforestation are a major source of CO2. Since Industrial Revolution began, the concentration of Carbon Dioxide has been increased by a third due to our actions.

We cannot stop natural processes but can mold our routines in a way that are friendlier for our environment. The most important things that can be done in this regard are, increase the number of trees and forests, and shift to renewable energy so that burning of fossil fuels could be avoided. Forests play an important role in climate change.

They regulate the carbon cycle so that the balance is maintained. Trees absorb CO2 from the environment. The carbon part is then converted into energy and stored in various parts of the plant like branches, stem, and trunk. Oxygen is then released into the atmosphere which is consumed by humans for carrying out respiration.

According to a new research, there are 3.08 trillion trees on the surface of Earth. This estimate is being considered very accurate, about 95%, by the experts. The figure given is 8 times more than the previous estimates which came forward. Thomas Crowther, who was the lead author of this study, explained that the range of diameter they used for a plant to be called a tree was more than previous work. He said,

A plant with woody stems larger than 10 centimeters (four inches) diameter at breast height.

Solar panels. Credit: Sunpower.com

The lower bound was set at 50 centimeters in the past. The findings also tell that the number of trees has gone down by 46% since the dawn of human civilization. This clearly indicates the impact of humans on forests. Crowther said,

We’ve nearly halved the number of trees on the planet, and we’ve seen the impacts on climate and human health as a result. This study highlights how much more effort is needed if we are to restore healthy forests worldwide.

Following the detailed results of this study, we have a clear situation on our hands. Currently, we have 422 trees per person but if the rate of deforestation continues without the plantation of substitute trees, we will be left with 214 trees per person in a comparatively short span of time. Organizations like Plant for the Planet Foundation, BioCarbon Engineering, and Earthday.org are working for planting billions of trees around the world but humans as a species need to get up to this cause and work together for saving the planet.

One more thing that is destroying Earth is the rapid consumption of fossil fuels. Their combustion emits harmful chemicals into the environment which leads to global warming. For many years now, countries are trying to develop infrastructure for renewable resources that could be used for generating clean energy. Resources like Wind and Solar are some common examples. The change in trend can be clearly understood by the following facts:

·         There is now 15 times more solar power and three times more wind power in the world than 2007.

·         The cost of solar and wind have decreased many times and they are now becoming the cheapest source of energy.

Wind is a popular method in those parts of the world which have a lot of windy regions. On the other hand, solar energy is available in almost all parts of the world and it has the potential to replace all the non-renewable ways of producing energy. Having said that, it is also the most under-utilized form of energy.  For sake of understanding this claim, refer to the fact that the US created only 0.0039% of its energy through solar panels. However, Elon Musk, who is CEO of SpaceX, staid that,

Solar will become the biggest energy source by 2031.

If we could develop ways of converting 20% of solar energy into electricity, solar panels in an area of the size of Spain can light up the entire world. Clean and Cheap Energy without damaging our planet. Just imagine!

Computer Scientist by qualification who loves to read, write, eat, and travel

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One Reply to “How many Trees and Renewable Energy is needed to revive the Planet?”

  1. The perspective of Palm Trees in a Storm is looking landward from a turbulent sea during a tropical storm.   Palm trees are symbolic of the tropical experience.

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